Monday, June 1–Today began with a meeting between the JWW crew, Indian Institute for Journalism and New Media professors Kanchan Kaur and Surekha Deepak, activist Anita Cheria, and two of our four translators, who are journalism students at Jain University.
We discussed our story ideas for the week, which cover a broad range of topics: pollution, fashion, the transgender community, the garment industry, music, the gaming scene, craft beer, human-elephant conflicts, traditional markets, stray dogs, the lack of historic preservation laws for heritage sites, start-up companies and community journalism. With the help of our visitors, we were able to flesh out the ideas into tangible stories to tackle in Bangalore.
Once we felt that our pitches were solid, we started to plan out the week. The logistics were tricky, as the stories will take us to different parts of Bangalore at different times of the day. Some may take us at least an hour away from our base at the Royale Senate Hotel. We had to seriously consider travel time in the city’s heavy traffic, which is usually a problem from 8:30 a.m. to about 11 a.m., then from 4 p.m. to about 9 p.m. It was also essential to consider who will be helping with which stories. No student will be traveling alone, and we are required to help out with others’ reporting, whether it is shooting photos or videos for the main reporter.
Another important detail to factor in was which stories will need translators to help with our reporting. Our translators can speak Hindu, Kannada, Tamil and, of course, English.
For the remainder of the day, the group split up to get cracking on some stories. Krysten Massa headed out to Malleswaram with Dipti Kumar, Alicia Bermudez and one of our translators, Ashwini Raj, to find saree shops as part of a piece that looks at the traditional garb.
As for the rest of the reporters, we started to contact sources for multiple stories, solidify interviews and research our topics more.–Kelly Zegers